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Colorado 13, Us 12, Obama 9, Israel 9, Michele Bachmann 6, U.s. 6, Lyrica 5, Ben Birnbaum 4, Washington 4, Max 3, Chad 3, Clinton 3, Larry 3, Sam 3, United States 3, Campbell 3, California 3, Limbaugh 3, Chad Griffin 2, Michelle Batchman 2,
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  MSNBC    NOW With Alex Wagner    News/Business. Alex Wagner.  
   Forces driving the day's stories. New.  

    March 21, 2013
    9:00 - 10:00am PDT  

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downy's putting our money where our soft is. ♪ ♪ no two people have the same financial goals. pnc works with you to understand yours and help plan for your retirement. visit a branch or call now for your personal retirement review. the gop is embracing gay marriage, immigration and defense cuts. with republicans like these, who needs democrats? it's thursday, march 21st and this is "now." joining me today, rick
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hertzberg of the "new yorker," former dnc communications director and msnbc political analyst, karen finney, editor of the "new york times" book review, sam tanninhouse and executive editor at msnbc.com richard wolfe, next week the supreme court is taking up two major cases on marriage equality. the constitutionality-the-defense of marriage act and california's prop 8, which prevents same-sex couples from marrying. in recent history, this has been an issue that breaks along party lines. in recent days, the view on the right has become increasingly hazy. as a reminder, this was the official republican position at their convention last summer. we reaffirm our support for a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. but leading figures in the gop appear to be coming around to the idea of marriage equality. some like rob portman have changed their position for personal reasons. and others, like raince priebus, for political expediency.
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the chairman of the gop which drafted the gop platform last summer is now arguing for inclusion. >> i know our principles and i know our parties believe that marriage is between one man and one woman. but i also know we have a party that's going to be inclusive and is going to listen to people and is going to allow differences of opinion in our party. >> but if certain voices seem intent to move forward on civil rights, the party's right flank is digging in its heels. >> young conservatives, 30 and under, 35 and under, gay marriage, all that matters. homosexual marriage. if the party makes that something official, that they support, they're not going to pull the homosexual activist voters away from the democrat party. but they are going to -- cause their base to stay home. and throw their hands up in utter frustration. >> similar frustration was echoed by evangelicals and
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social conservatives. family reform council president tony perkins has wrote this week, raince priebus's has decided that the way for his party -- >> president of the national organization for marriage, brian brown, sass the grassroots of the party are 100% committed to protecting marriage and you can't just kick them to the curb. >> and according to faith and freedom coalition founder, raffle reed, if the republican party tries to retreat from being a pro marriage, pro family party, the big tent is going to become a pup tent very fast. >> will republican elders heed the warnings from social conservatives? at the rnc at least, the ship may have already sailed. as evidence, the rnc strategy document released this week, the so-called growth and opportunity project, did not once mention the words christian or church. joining us now to discuss the future of social conservatism and marriage equality, is the president of the human rights campaign, chad griffin. chad, it is a happy day to have
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you on this program. >> it is nice to be here, alex. >> chad, let's talk about what's going on inside the republican party. there's much change afoot. but specifically on the issue of gay marriage, is it your thinking that we're witnessing a sea change from conservatives, that they may in fact be ready to embrace the notion of marriage equality? >> there's no question, alex, we have reached the tipping point, if not quite frankly passed the tipping point as it relates to the issue of marriage equality. what's happening within the republican party is no different than what's happening in this country, quite frankly. the research shows that 80% of americans have someone in their immediate family or close friends circle, a co-worker, a friend at church, a neighbor, who is lgbt. as more and more americans have come to know, their friends and neighbors and family members, they support full equality under the law every single time. there's a poll out this week that shows 58% of americans support marriage equality.
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but the most fascinating number there, the number that indicates really where we're headed as a country, 81% of people under the age of 30 support marriage equality. that's republicans, independents, as well as democrats. and both of the parties are going to get on board or be left behind quite frankly. so i think it's becoming increasingly difficult to be on the wrong side of this issue. because it turns off voters. >> let me ask you, chad, no good deed goes unpunished. the fact that you're talking young voters is salient to this piece. which is as much as you have republicans trying to push for moderation, understanding they have a problem, especially with young voters on the issue of gay marriage. you have folks like rush limbaugh, christian and evangelical conservatives who are continuing on with more divisive rhetoric around what is i think what most people see as a basic civil right. how much is that damage the republican party as it tries to, if you will, ameliorate itself on this issue? >> public support on this issue
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has moved even amongst evangelicals. a majority of catholics in this country support marriage equality and it's quite frankly the conservative american principles. my good friends, republicans ted olsen and ken mehlman, when they talk about this issue, they don't support marriage equality. in spite of being a republican or a conservative, they support it because they are conservatives. at the end of the day, regardless of what faith tradition become from, we all grew up learning the golden rule, treat others as you wish to be treated. quite frankly, the freedom to marry and one's fundamental right to marry the person that we love in this country, is the most conservative of american values. and so when i hear ralph reed or rush limbaugh, it reminds me of someone seated in solitary confinement, they're talking to themselves with their own voices echoing. >> the voices in rush limbaugh's head are strong and loud. but let's open this up to our panel in new york.
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karen, could we be, there's a lot of talk of this rnc document and the fact that it doesn't mention church or christianity. and some blow-back as you're seeing from evangelicals about where at the table the social conservatives sit. i will read an excerpt from the always-wise jonathan chate who said when you're overburdened with ideological baggage you're not necessarily going to throw away the heaviest thing you're carrying, you're going to throw away the thing you like the least. for people running the republican party, that's social issues. >> the problem that the republican party is having, is the value these say they espouse do not match the policies they are preaching. do not match then the political reality of the country. chad knows, i've known chad a long time, he knows this as well as anybody, think about how things have changed within the democratic party. at this point to be a major national democratic party candidate, you can't not support marriage equality. the problem for the republicans on the social issues is the reality of the country is,
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people are changing. they're trying to pretend that it hasn't changed, and yet, they're saying they want to be inclusive. that's not political reality. it doesn't make political sense. which in addition to the moral values of saying, we should all be equal or we should be able to marry the person we love. to continue these things, underscore the challenges within the party. they don't yet know how to be a big tent party. >> rick, it's always been sort of a fraught relationship between social conservatives and fiscal conservatives. i will point out from the "new yorker," a venerable magazine. an interesting feature about a year and a half ago about the republican party's position on birth control and uses that to go into the larger discussion of how republicans came to be the party of social conservatives. and evangelicals and she writes, abortion wasn't a partisan issue until republicans made it one. in the late 1970s, the republican strategists richard
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vigory and paul warrick both of whom are catholic, recruited jerry falwell in a pro-family agenda. he said abortion ought to be the keystone of their organizing strategy, since this was the issue that could divide the democratic party. >> well, as long as abortion was the big social issue, the republicans could get away with the supreme court was protecting them. you had, you weren't going to be able to ban abortion because of the supreme court. so it was safe to have a party position against abortion. this is different. and the task of keeping that evangelical component of the republican party from wandering off, is a lot more challenging. this is just an excruciating problem for the republicans. but i think they can probably thread the needle by talking about how it should be left for the states or i personally don't
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like gay marriage, but i think -- they're going to struggle. >> it does, as chad points out, it brings to the fore what is conservatism, right? i mean there's a lot of argument about the government needs to stay out of my back yard and the party in terms of its national policies has embraced specifically those policies that are intrusive. whether that's a transvaginal ultrasound or deciding who gets to get married or who doesn't. sam you've written about the trajectory of the republican party are, we witnessing a moment where you may in fact as matt lewis says, conservatives have already lost the culture war. sure, some politicians with stapd on principle, but eventually politicians represent public opinion, then he maligns social conservative groups saying the so-called pro family groups are most lay joke. could this be beginning of the end for social conservatives sitting inside the republican party tent? >> it could be and what's so tough for them to deal with. i think everybody here knows, for 20 years, when republicans
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dominated politics, from 1968 to 1988, they don't realize that's when it ended. it was social issues that got them there. i've had two names for you. barry goldwater, who early on supported the rights of gays to serve in the military. why? because he had a gay person in his family. at that point the republicans could have picked up his message, they didn't. another name a little more obscure, i bet rick knows it, though, marvin lievman. he was a huge organizer for the republican party. tied in with national review. and he wrote a memoir in the early '90s called coming out conservative. saying he was gay. one reason he been attracted to that earlier libertarian conservatism, goldwater's conservatism was because it seemed less conformist than the democratic party what happened to him? good-bye, marvin, we don't love you any more. it started a long time ago.
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>> let's throw in one more name, andrew sullivan. who although he has not supported candidate for president since bush the first time, is a conservative voice for those certain kind of conservatism. and was almost alone in advocacy of gay marriage at the beginning. and look at what has happened. it's absolutely extraordinary. >> and chad, i want to bring you back in here. we're going to be looking ahead to d.o.m.a. and prop 8 and the supreme court is going to be hearing arguments on those cases. some people have said the best thing for the republican party would be four the court to strike down both of those provisions so they don't exactly have to litigate or plant a flag on their opinion regarding gay marriage any more. it's settled law of the land and everybody can forget about this being a divisive issue and move along. what do you make of that? >> well look, there's no question that congress, that passed d.o.m.a., certainly has a responsibility as many there have tried.
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to repeal d.o.m.a. d.o.m.a. is before the supreme court next week, as is proposition 8, the marriage ban in cal cam. we'll see what the court does on those two. i'm opt michtic on both. at the end of the day, we don't decide the fundamental rights of a minority by the a vote of the people or the whims of public opinion polls. that's with a our judiciary is there for. as we're talking about the new language that you're hearing from chairman raince priebus and the report that came out from the republican party, i think that is significant movement. what the next important step is going to be, to see how that's followed up with actual policy actions. and there are a number of things, aside from repealing d.o.m.a., that the congress should and could do, one would be passing an employment nondiscrimination act. in this country, in more than half the states, can you fire someone for being lgbt. and congress has a responsibility there and they should act and i think this is a perfect opening for republicans and democrats to come and work
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together on this issue. >> chad, one more question before we go. when you read the growth and outreach or opportunity project report, were you surprised? at the mention of gay marriage, and lack of mention of sort of christianity and the church? >> well i specifically looked at, there were four times in that report where they discussed the importance of of reaching out and campaigning to gay people, i think they used the word gays, and i do think campaigning for their vote is important. we were six million of the electorate this last election. there was only a three million-vote margin between mitt romney and president obama. there's also some reference to the policy there. but it's unclear exactly what that would mean or where it would go. look, this just falls within the narrative of everything we're seeing in this country. as more and more republicans, more and more democrats and the american public evolves and has evolved quite quickly on this issue. and it's time quite frankly for
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our elected leaders in washington to catch up with the rest of the country. >> rock on, human rights campaign president, chad griffin, thanks for coming on the show. >> pleasure to be here, thank you, alex. hash tag now is the time, it could be mantra for middle east peace. we will ask the new republican's ben birnbaum about the fierce urgency of a two-state solution when he joins us live from tel aviv, just ahead. hey, our salads. [ bop ] [ bop ] [ bop ] you can do that all you want, i don't like v8 juice. [ male announcer ] how about v8 v-fusion. a full serving of vegetables, a full serving of fruit. but what you taste is the fruit. so even you... could've had a v8. who checks all the weekly ads to get the best sale prices. let me ask you, do you think you can get the same great prices here with walmart's low price guarantee? let's try! let's go.
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for most of their relationship, president obama and prime minister netanyahu
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have been frenemies, but yesterday the two couldn't have been chummier. even if some of it came at the expense of nbc's chuck todd. >> i thought i had four questions. >> reiterations. >> i get four questions, right? >> look, this is not a kosher question, but don't hog it. >> i guess i was, my question to you was going to be why do you believe the israeli people have not embraced president obama the same way they embraced our last two u.s. presidents? thank you. >> so you had to get a polling question in there and write it in, huh? >> chuck, i mean you're just incorrigible. >> the laurel and hardy of bilateral press conferences, we'll discuss special relationships and two-state solutions when the "new republic"'s ben birnbaum joins us, next. [ female announcer ] you walk into your laundry room and it just hits you!
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president obama may be in israel to discuss the tumult in the middle east, but yesterday his visit looked less like an official state visit and more like an obama/bebe reunion tour. despite the president's rocky past with the prime minister, their reunion was a veritable love fest, complete with back pats, warm embraces and nicknames. at one point, netanyahu suggesteded two go bar-hopping in delltel aviv. the positive mojo that "the atlantic"'s jeffrey goldberg has given the visit a new name, "operation desert schmooze." for their part, the israelis seem thrilled. the jerusalem post said president obama quote had us at shalom. today the bilateral love-in was challenged as president obama tackled the two-state solution.
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he spoke to the importance of an israeli/palestinian peace. both in interviews with palestinian president mahmoud abbas and moments ago in a high-profile address to israeli youth. >> i've returned to the west bank because the united states is deeply committed to the creation of an independent an sovereign state of palestine. >> peace is necessary. piece is necessary, i believe that. the only way for israel to endure and thrive as a jewish and democratic state is through the realization of an independent and viable palestine. that is true. >> underscoring just how rough the road ahead will be for any deal, as the president spoke of peace, palestinians were prot t protesting u.s. support for israel and rockets were being launched into israel from gaza. joining us from tel aviv is ben birnbaum, a contributor at the "new republic" and the author of this week's cover story, "the end of the two-state solution."
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ben thanks for joining us. in your article, ben, you sort of outline your argument for the fact that the time is now for a two-state solution. despite the title of the story. and among the things you outlined, you say the majority of israelis and palestinians support a two-state solution. that the majority of the settlements they can still be doern down and that abbas remains in office and he's probably the best partner there may be for a two-state solution. tell us more about this thesis? >>. >> sure, what i would say is that to have a two-state solution, as opposed to just a two-state reality, which theoretically israel could create unilaterally. but an actual deal signed by leaders on both sides that does formally end the conflict, you really need four categories of things. you need first and foremost for a solution to be doable on the
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ground. you need to be able to draw a border between the two states that would satisfy the political needs of both sides. you need to be able to create a palestinian capital in east jerusalem and you need to be all to withdraw however many settlers that would be beyond the borders of the states. you need leadership on both sides willing to make the compromises necessary for a deal. you need public opinion to be receptive to a deal. ideally to be able to approve it by a majority in a referendum. and fourth, you need a context, both a security context where things are generally calm and there aren't buses blowing up or israeli incursions into the west bank or gaza. and you also need a regional context. both the support of the neighboring arab states for a deal. and the involvement of the international community, particularly the united states. >> i want to -- >> i would argue that today -- >> i want to jump off that last point and open it up to our panel in new york. in terms of the involvement of
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the united states in pursuing a two-state solution. the president is over there, to, we've call dd a charm offensive. he is not polling very well in israel. >> you could put it like that. >> 10% approval rating. he spoke to an audience of 1,000 israeli students. if you look at the numbers of what young people think in terms of support for a two-state solution. among 18-24-year-olds, only 40% favor a palestinian state. that number increases by the time you get to 55-64-year-olds, it's 67%. there's clearly a lot of work to be done in terms of making the case to israeli youth that a two-state solution should be the road forward. >> there is. but and by the way, israeli youth isn't just another demographic, they're the people who serve in the military. unless you're ultraorthodox and even that's changing now, all of those people face the very real consequences of what this political situation is. and so to some degree, they're really hyperradicalized by any suggestion of conflict.
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because they're engaging in it. beyond that, israelis and palestinians at this moment have a very different view of what the political reality is. israelis, this is a moment of calm that ben was talking about. what is the impetus, what is the reason when their economy is doing relatively well, when there are relatively few threats ostensibly from the palestinians, because people aren't dieing in the same numbers as a few years ago, what is the impetus of making a deal right now and having those difficult compromises and moving those settlers outth and on the palestinian side, why not have a third intifada, this isn't moving. there is a very short timeframe here for the president and the israeli leadership to try to move the needle and move a peace process into gear. and we don't really see anything beyond some very fine outreach an very fine speeches. because there are other strategic realities, notably iran and syria yet again. the palestinian conflict, the palestinian situation, is right at the bottom of everyone's list. >> ben, you're in tel aviv. tell us how the president is
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being received. i mean we went through the headlines and the sort of love fest and the matching outfits that bebe and the president were wearing yesterday. but in terms of the people on the ground, the youth to the degree that you've interfaced with them, how are president obama's efforts being met? >> i think so far, so good. as, as chuck todd was saying before, president obama had the misfortune of falling two of the most beloved u.s. presidents in history. so he already started out with a disadvantage and of course there was suspicion from his middle name. and his father's muslim past. and he didn't help his cause, in the cairo speech when even though he meant well, when he basically drew israel's legitimacy to the holocaust. and the thing you'll notice on this trip in pretty much every speech that president obama has made, is that he's really made an effort to talk about the ancient jewish connection to this land. that's what israelis wanted to
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hear. and the fact that he's going to see the dead sea skrocrolls, replicas of the second temple, these are all very much planned. >> he brought out some of the slogans of 2008. we must be the change we seek. and these ideas, it was really interesting. because that is no longer the president we see. he is mired in washington dysfunction. the message of hope and change and believing that progress is possible -- is something that's now being trotted out on the international stage. >> there's two dynamics at play here in israel. number one, bibi is in a politically very different situation domestically than he was at the beginning of the obama presidency. i would imagine, i would be curious to hear other folks weigh in on this. that's changing the dynamic a little bit from his perspective. that being said, i think president obama has also understood, and you saw clinton do this, secretary clinton did this, every single trip she ever
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did, she did something outside of the official and made a point to go talk directly to the people. and i think the president understands that he has got to go make that case and try to you know, whether it's poll numbers or what have you. build some kind of a bond with the people directly, because how you impact and are viewed by the folks outside of government will help your efforts inside of government. and he hasn't always done that. you know, the last thing i'll say on this is people see it as a sign of respect. come and talk to us. granted it was a supportive audience. but come and talk to us, show us that you care about the things that are important to our culture. to our history. george bush, remember, he was not a big fan of doing that. and it really, it was something that -- >> and also this is the president, this is president obama's first state visit to israel, right? and ben, as you mentioned, i want to get you in here one more time before we let you go. this is in many ways, the president is making up for what are may be seen as past transgressions, whether that's the cairo speech or the tense relationship that he and bibi have had in the oval office in
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their bilateral press conferences in the u.s. whether that's the relationship during the campaign when netanyahu basically was a romney support supporter. how convinced are you, standing there if tel aviv, that the relationship between these two leaders is going to be measurably different, which is to say better after this trip? i think a lot will depend on how iran is dealt with. i think in so far as president obama is seen taking a strong hand on iran, that gives him a little more legitimacy to push bibi on the palestinian issue. you have to remember that in benjamin netanyahu's first term, when he clashed with president clinton, he was blamed for causing the cries cries by israelis. and this time around, people have generally sided with benjamin netanyahu. so israelis don't want to see bad relations with the u.s. which they still see as their only reliable ally.
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>> thank you, ben birnbaum, his new article is in the "new republic," on stands now. could be the mile-high heir, the younger active demographics or maybe it is the democratically controlled state house, whatever it is, something big is happening in colorado. we'll get to the bottom of the rocky mountain high. look, if you have copd like me, you know it can be hard to breathe, and how that feels. copd includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. spiriva helps control my copd symptoms by keeping my airways open for 24 hours. plus, it reduces copd flare-ups. spiriva is the only once-daily inhaled copd maintenance treatment that does both. spiriva handihaler tiotropium bromide inhalation powder
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i'm maria, and i have diabetic nerve pain. i felt like my feet were going to sleep. it was like pins and needles sticking in your toes and in your feet. it progressed from there to burning like i was walking on hot coals. at that point, i knew i had to do something. when i went to see my doctor, she chose lyrica. once i started taking the lyrica, the pain started subsiding. [ female announcer ] it's known that diabetes damages nerves. lyrica is fda approved to treat diabetic nerve pain. lyrica is not for everyone. it may cause serious allergic reactions or suicidal thoughts or actions. tell your doctor right away if you have these, new or worsening depression, or unusual changes in mood or behavior. or swelling, trouble breathing, rash, hives, blisters, changes in eye sight including blurry vision, muscle pain with fever, tired feeling, or skin sores from diabetes. common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain, and swelling of hands, legs, and feet. don't drink alcohol while taking lyrica. don't drive or use machinery
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magazine clips are limited to 15 rounds, universal background checks are mandatory and the checks will be paid for by gun purchasers. >> i think it's a coincidence, but an incredibly tragic and sad coincidence that we have to process all of this in a single day. >> needless to say republicans weren't happy about the gun safety measures, but with democrats in control of both chambers, they were powerless to stop them. to prove that point, the legislature's top republican, stood in front of a doctored new york flag to lament that his flag was becoming a bastion of progressivism. he may want to get his hands on a california flag. this afternoon, the governor will sign a civil unions into law six years after a ballot initiative in the state that defined marriage as between a man and a woman. what's going on in the square state? part of colorado's story of change comes from the state house where democrats control both the governor's office and bomb chambers of the legitimate
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slate t . joining us now from denver, is salon.com contributor and author, david sarota. thank you for being on the program. what is going on in the square state? this seems to be a relatively striking shift in a relatively very, very short amount of time. to what do you owe this? i know we talk about the fact that democrats control the state house and the legislature. but let's talk about the demographics, the grassroots shift, the people of colorado who are fomenting this change. >> well, look, you've got a big influx of new voters in this state. the state's population continues to grow. and that has of course added to the shift in colorado. there's also a growing latino population, we're now have about 20% of the state is latino. and latinos tend to vote at least right now in a progressive kind of way. and so those shifts and then
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there's some other issues happening outside the state capital. there's push to ban fracking in a number of communities, republican and democratic communities. there's now a debate happening in the legislature over the death penalty. so and of course the marijuana issue is an issue that doesn't just appeal to progressives, but appeal to a lot of the west libertarian spirit. so there's a big convergence happening here that's demographic and i think kind of a convergence of a political moment. >> sam, i want to talk to you about this as we talk about red america, blue america and purple america. the fact that colorado is seeing this kind of landmark change in such a short period of time, what does that mean? we talked about the republican party and where its future may lie in the show. but this would seem to be an alarm bell ringing quite loudly for the gop. >> it seems to be my function today to drop emi obscure names, i've got two -- also connected with a the "new republic," john
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judas and marie teixeira, years ago the democratic majority were looking at this and said two things will happen. you're going to see a changing demography and a liberalization of the culture. that suburbanites outside of denver don't have hugely different views from latino population there. it's the sort of progressivizing of the country. so interesting, because the republican base were so familiar with, was all about the sunbelt. that was the big word. so much for the sunbelt, it's getting tarnished for them. we'll see it in other states there was a time when california was reliably a republican state. not happening. >> richard, what's striking to me is that even if there is, if there's space for republicans, it would seem to be sort of if we're looking at colorado, more along as david says, the libertarian side of the party. which is we've talked a lot about rand paul this week how he's more progressive on immigration, with drugs,
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specifically marijuana, gay marriage. i mean is that the direction that they're going to be forced into, given what's happening in states like colorado? >> you know i don't think it's clear. but the dynamic has shifted. it's not just about party unity this gets back to our conversation earlier about social issues. the dynamic for republicans really since the '60s and '70s has been to push back against the idea of a, a degrading progressive culture. that there was this movement in the '60s, reagan was the best expression of this. the government had got too big, the liberals had run out of control and that they had something to push against. and here what you're seeing, whether it's colorado or anywhere else or on same-sex marriage, republicans trying to play catch up. that is to say, they're not pushing against the culture, they're not saying we need to cleanse this place and get back to the silent majority or where the real heartland is. they're trying to catch up with the heartland. and that's a very different dynamic. catch-up is very different from pushing back and saying -- we're
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the only thing standing between you and gomorrah. and that's been their premise, if that's not what they do, what is their role? in a way rush limbaugh is right if they're just trying to parrot the left, they're back to a '60s dynamic. >> the democratic party made an effort over the last several presidential election cycles. bush won in 2000, kerry narrowed the margin in 2004. i spent a lot of time there when i was on the presidential campaign in 2004. we saw changes in the rocky mountain west. governor dean intentionally put the convention in denver. we looked at the changing and said there's an opportunity there, because the conservatives in the rocky mountain west are different than the southern conservatives, there are places where we can have common cause and shared values. it also means that as a party we had to show up and make an argument and do the work and actually i think david knows this, a lot of the groups, the grassroots, have been doing the
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work. there are a lot of things that have to come together for that kind of change to happen. >> let's talk about that. the democrats control the state house and the governorship, david, but if you look at the breakdown, 1.24 million colorado residents are unaffiliated. and then basically it's even, 1.12 million republicans, 1.11 democrats. but you quote the "denver post" publisher dean singleton. he says, this is a republican, i think colorado is probably a democratic state from now on. it is a democratic state today and i don't think it's going back. how have democrats managed to make such inroads, given the breakdown of the party affiliations among the residents? >> i think the democrats have done a better job of appealing to independents and to richard's point earlier, the culture has moved away from the republican party. colorado is the home of focus on the family. it has a huge christian right elementary to its politics, and yet we're passing civil unions. we're having a discussion about, we have legalized marijuana so
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what's really gone on here i think is that democrats have fought the good fight on a lot of issues for a number of years. when they were out in the wilderness. and after fighting and fighting and fighting, now that they are in control of the legislature, in control of some of the politics, the groups that have been fighting toor that change are taking advantage and rightly so. because frankly, that's what the public voted for in this state when they voted repeatedly for democrats. >> you know, david before we let you go. the thing that's a piece of this, highly underdiscussed is the control by one party of both the governorship and the state legislature. i think the statistic is staggering. in 2004, 30 states had divided government. in 2013, 37 states are under one-party rule. the implications there for democracy writ large, it's somewhat disconcerting. i wonder what you make of it. certainly a lot more gets done, if you will. but you know, in terms of having a balance of power, it seems to throw that into question.
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>> well here's how it works out here. john hickenlooper, you would have called him five or six years ago, probably a moderate republican. the democrats in the legislature are probably more progressive than john hicken looper as a whole. there's a good dynamic going on here, a slowsly-divided state house, in terms of the numbers in the state house. i think there's a good dynamic where a more progressive legislature is sending bills it a more conservative, yet still democratic governor and finding common ground over there. rather than what we've always seen in so much of our politics is the right arguing with and negotiating with and finding compromises with the far right. >> that's all we have for this segment. but david as the country turns deeper shades of purple, i'm sure we'll have you back for more of your expertise, thank you to salon.com's david sirota. coming up in the gop primaries, congresswoman michele bachmann made a name for herself
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with truth challenge statements. this weekend bachmann gifted the country with more of her wildly questionable assertions, which we'll discuss coming up next. (dog) larry,larry,larrryyy. why take exercise so seriously,when it can be fun? push-ups or sprints? what's wrong with fetch? or chase? let's do this larry! ooh, i got it, i got it! (narrator) the calorie-smart nutrition in beneful healthy weight... includes grains and real chicken, because a healthy dog is a playful dog. beneful healthy weight. find us on facebook to help put more play in your day. 14 clubs. that's what they tell us a legal golf bag can hold. and while that leaves a little room for balls and tees, it doesn't leave room for much else. there's no room left for deadlines or conference calls. not a single pocket to hold the stress of the day,
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there are going to be people who die because of this. and in this body, let it be said today, that we don't want to see anyone die or anyone hurt or anyone denied and that's exactly what this bill is going to do. which is why we have to repeal it. >> that was tea party darling michele bachmann speaking on the house floor earlier this hour. this week she received four pinocchios from the "washington post" fact checker after claim that 70% of food stamps end up in the hands of d.c. bureaucrats. in fact, only 6% of the program is spend on administrative costs. rick, i actually as comedic as
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michele bachmann's lies and distortions are, are really dangerous this gets into the water stream and becomes a talking point and people are misled about the realities of our budget and government spending. >> this is like the flip side of the kind of the official republican attempt to pull the party slowly back toward reality. this is a sentiment that settles down at the bottom this is what happens when you read the comment section of too many right-wing blogs, so beware of that. >> don't ever read the comment section of any wing blog. >> you know, she probably is getting more air time on msnbc at this point than on fox. >> we did play the fact that bill o'reilly shouted her out yesterday, karen, i thought was actually a welcome change. that someone was saying, you can't, he was speaking i think more to michele bachmann's comments regarding the number of private chefs or dog walkers the president has. at least someone is saying hey, this is shawl ball, you shouldn't be playing this game. >> it was a welcome and
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refreshing change from what we've seen when what was it, the friends of hamas claim against secretary hagel or michele bachma bachmann's attack on a worker for hillary clinton. so bill o'reilly one time called her out. part of this is the republican party has got do break their addiction to the bill o'reilly. >> to crazy. >> to you know, rush limbaugh and i don't know, check a few facts, do a little math here and there. >> are they going to break, are they still hooked on crazy, richard? >> they are. >> i think it's very hard to go cold turkey on that. what will happen -- for some of us. you know when you, when you think about how, lest we forget, michele bachmann rose to such a position. it was being a presidential candidate. what is to stop her or people like her? what is the difference between her and some of the claims that ted cruz has made? these are prominent people, they will get a platform and some of the things that we used to say
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at "newsweek," are too good to check. they don't want to check this stuff out. you will rile up the crowd, you will rise up in some obscure primary or caucus and you'll be off to the races in the opinion polls. >> sam, i will say the "washington post" fact-checked michele bachmann and there were literally not enough pinocchios to give her. she had broke the pinocchio machine. someone is doing the work out there, imperfect though it may be. >> it reminds me of joe mccarthy back in the heyday. first he made the accusation, 205 communists. then it changed to 87. then it was 57 and then finally, at the republican convention in 1952, he said who cares? one communist in the u.s. government is one communist too many. >> one dog walker is too many. 6% is 6% too much. we got to leave it there, thank you, to rick, karen, sam and richard. i'll see you back tomorrow when i'm joined by sam stein, heather
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mcgee and author michael moss. for more on the changing face of colorado, log on to facebo facebook/now. you ready? we wanna be our brother's keeper. what's number two we wanna do? bring it up to 90 decatherms. how bout ya, joe? let's go ahead and bring it online. attention on site, attention on site. now starting unit nine. some of the world's cleanest gas turbines are now powering some of america's biggest cities. siemens. answers. she was a picky eater. well now i'm her dietitian and last year, she wasn't eating so well. so i recommended boost complete nutritional drink to help her get the nutrition she was missing. and now she drinks it every day. well, it tastes great! [ male announcer ] boost has 26 essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium and vitamin d to support strong bones, and 10 grams of protein to help maintain muscle. and our great taste is guaranteed or your money back.

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